Musk used the same Latin phrase after posting a similar poll last weekend before reinstating former President Donald Trump’s account, which Twitter banned for encouraging the Capitol insurrection on Jan. 6, 2021. Trump said said he would not return to Twitter but did not delete his account.
Such online surveys are anything but scientific and can easily be influenced by bots.
In the month since Musk took over Twitter, groups that monitor the platform for racist, anti-Semitic and other toxic slurs say it’s on the rise in the world’s de facto public square. This included a resurgence of racist insults against World Cup footballers that Twitter would not have acted.
The increase in harmful content is largely due to the mess that followed Musk’s decision to lay off half of the company’s 7,500 employees, fire top executives, and then institute a series of ultimatums that have prompted hundreds more to quit. Countless contractors responsible for content moderation have also been fired. Among those who quit over a lack of faith in Musk’s desire to keep Twitter from turning into a chaos of unchecked talk were Twitter’s trust and safety chief, Yoel Roth.
Major advertisers have also abandoned the platform.
On Oct. 28, the day after his takeover, Musk tweeted that no suspended accounts would be reinstated until Twitter formed a “content moderation council” with various views that would review the cases.
On Tuesday, he said he was going back to that promise because he agreed at the insistence of a “broad coalition of political-social activist groups” who later “broke the deal” by urging the advertisers to at least temporarily stop giving Twitter their Business.
A day earlier, Twitter reinstated the personal account of far-right representative Marjorie Taylor Greene, who was banned in January for violating the platform’s Covid misinformation policies.
Musk, meanwhile, is increasingly becoming friends on Twitter with right-wing figures. Ahead of the US midterm elections this month, he urged “independent-minded” people to vote Republican.